The idea of "accepting" ourselves and our stutter is one we have heard all our lives. It is a way of managing the shame and self-loathing that so-often comes with stuttering, and is the basis of many self-help groups. I struggled with accepting myself my entire life. It was continuous and difficult work since I quite literally hated myself. I cannot count how many "failed" conversations filled with stuttering, facial tics, and averted eyes ended with me walking away, repeatedly muttering "stupid Josh, stupid Josh, stupid Josh" in order to cope with extreme embarrassment and shame. If I ever did come to accept myself it was never for very long.
Acceptance is a bandage for a much larger problem.
Perhaps the very notion of accepting ourselves depends on us first admitting that there is something wrong with us and how we speak. Self-acceptance starts with a concession. Do non-stutterers have to accept themselves, fluency and all? This idea of course seems silly. It is only because we admit that we are abnormal that we have to start picking up the pieces. While we are often told that self-acceptance is the way to deal with self-hate, I think that self-acceptance actually just puts a different coat of paint on self-loathing. There is still something rotting underneath. Perhaps this is why we struggle with accepting ourselves over and over and over again. But what if there is actually nothing wrong with you, nothing to accept, nothing to fix?
Empowerment and acceptance are not the same thing.